Scientists Test Bird-Proof Glass

Geo Beats
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Scientists are running experiments to find a new kind of glass that will prevent birds from flying into it. Estimates claim that anywhere from 365 million to 988 million birds die each year from flying into buildings made of reflecting glass.

Scientists are running experiments to find a new kind of glass that will prevent birds from flying into windows.

Estimates claim that anywhere from 365 million to 988 million birds die each year from flying into buildings with glass panels.

At a tunnel in the Bronx Zoo, experts from New York City Audubon, the American Bird Conservancy and Fordham University are testing different kinds of methods to see which is the most effective for stopping birds from crashing into windows.

Doctor Christine Sheppard, who formerly headed the ornithology department at the Bronx Zoo, and is part of the Wildlife Conservation Society is quoted as saying: “Suddenly glass companies realize there’s a market for bird-friendly products. We want to support these companies. Our goal is to create an independent testing institute.”

Using an ultraviolet reflective coating that is almost invisible to the human eye but obvious to birds, Ornilux is one kind of sophisticated glass that has proven to be effective in tests in Germany. Two thirds of the birds tested in the Bronx tunnel avoided glass with an ultraviolet coating, and a majority also noticed glass with black lines in it.

While the visual patterns on the glass are a visual deterrent for the birds, architects and designers don’t particularly like using these, so the tests are focused on seeing just how few lines are needed to be bird effective yet unobtrusive for human occupants.

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